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One mom's real-talk letter to her son's future romantic partner.

My son is about to start dating. Here's what I want his future partner to know.

I’m glad that my kid is dating.

No, really, I am. He has traveled a long, challenging, carefully crafted road toward young adulthood, and we didn’t work this hard just to freak out and get possessive and controlling at the moment he dares to carve out a personal life of his own.

We didn’t raise this fine young man just to pretend that he’s on a high shelf for no one else but parents and family members to appreciate and admire.


But if it's up to me, the person who chooses to be with my kid romantically won’t be just anyone.

They’ll need to have their act together. They can’t rely on their beauty, education, intellect, or social status to win my vote.

Photo via iStock.

I know I have no business making a list. But a mom can be hopeful, right?

So to any young person who wants to date my son, here’s what I hope you will be:

1. I hope you’ll be yourself.

Be comfortable enough to be exactly who you are. Whoever you are around your closest friends should be the same when you’re around him. Do not feel the need to act differently when you’re with him—whether it’s acting more mature, more bubbly, more intellectual, more adventurous, or more reserved. You don’t need to change for anyone.

2. I hope you’ll be honest.

Be honest about everything that matters — what you feel, what you like, what you don’t like, what you want. Honesty really is the best policy, and I don’t mean with just him. Be honest with yourself, more importantly.

3. I hope you’ll be self-confident.

You likely did not get his attention with your fashion sense or makeup artistry, so stop by to say hi in your sweatpants. Let him see you after an exhausting day at work or school when you cannot be bothered to “get ready.” Your inner beauty outshines your best efforts to be pretty, hot, handsome, or sexy, and you know this.

4. I hope you'll be self-aware.

I hope you know yourself better than you know anyone else. Recognize what upsets you, what makes you happy, what you’re bad at, what you’re great at, and what you’re still learning (about yourself).

Don’t let this relationship define you. Let it enhance and inspire who you already are.

5. I hope you'll be responsible.

Be grateful and excited that you live in an era when everyone can unabashedly do their thing. If you feel stifled, stuck, or discontented in this relationship, you are the only one who can change that.

Your happiness and comfort are your highest priorities. Do not ever forget that, no matter how deeply you care for him.

6. I hope you'll be realistic.

You have your whole life ahead of you. Don’t make this relationship the center of your life. Do live in the moment. Revel and dwell in the joy that a new relationship brings. But make space for the friends, interests, and priorities you both had before you knew each other.

7. I hope you'll be patient.

You’re both young. There’s no guidebook or precise formula for the perfect relationship. You’re both going to fall short of each other’s expectations sometimes, and you’re going to continually learn so many things about yourself. 20 years from now, I hope you'll remember this advice and think, hmm, that’s still true today (well, maybe except for the part about being young).

I wish someone had told me these things when I started dating.

All too often, a young person’s world gets wrapped around their adoration for someone, and before they realize it, they can lose so much of what makes them who they are and it can be hard to see which direction is up.

Don’t lose yourself to gain the attention of a boy, even if he is my son.

You are far too precious. And if you don’t believe me, ask the people who love you the most. They’ll say I’m right. They adore you just the way you are right now, like my son does.

Joy

Nurse turns inappropriate things men say in the delivery room into ‘inspirational’ art

"Can you move to the birthing ball so I can sleep in the bed?"

Holly the delivery nurse.

After working six years as a labor and delivery nurse Holly, 30, has heard a lot of inappropriate remarks made by men while their partners are in labor. “Sometimes the moms think it’s funny—and if they think it’s funny, then I’ll laugh with them,” Holly told TODAY Parents. “But if they get upset, I’ll try to be the buffer. I’ll change the subject.”

Some of the comments are so wrong that she did something creative with them by turning them into “inspirational” quotes and setting them to “A Thousand Miles” by Vanessa Carlton on TikTok.

“Some partners are hard to live up to!” she jokingly captioned the video.

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All images provided by Adewole Adamson

It begins with more inclusive conversations at a patient level

True

Adewole Adamson, MD, of the University of Texas, Austin, aims to create more equity in health care by gathering data from more diverse populations by using artificial intelligence (AI), a type of machine learning. Dr. Adamson’s work is funded by the American Cancer Society (ACS), an organization committed to advancing health equity through research priorities, programs and services for groups who have been marginalized.

Melanoma became a particular focus for Dr. Adamson after meeting Avery Smith, who lost his wife—a Black woman—to the deadly disease.

melanoma,  melanoma for dark skin Avery Smith (left) and Adamson (sidenote)

This personal encounter, coupled with multiple conversations with Black dermatology patients, drove Dr. Adamson to a concerning discovery: as advanced as AI is at detecting possible skin cancers, it is heavily biased.

To understand this bias, it helps to first know how AI works in the early detection of skin cancer, which Dr. Adamson explains in his paper for the New England Journal of Medicine (paywall). The process uses computers that rely on sets of accumulated data to learn what healthy or unhealthy skin looks like and then create an algorithm to predict diagnoses based on those data sets.

This process, known as supervised learning, could lead to huge benefits in preventive care.

After all, early detection is key to better outcomes. The problem is that the data sets don’t include enough information about darker skin tones. As Adamson put it, “everything is viewed through a ‘white lens.’”

“If you don’t teach the algorithm with a diverse set of images, then that algorithm won’t work out in the public that is diverse,” writes Adamson in a study he co-wrote with Smith (according to a story in The Atlantic). “So there’s risk, then, for people with skin of color to fall through the cracks.”

Tragically, Smith’s wife was diagnosed with melanoma too late and paid the ultimate price for it. And she was not an anomaly—though the disease is more common for White patients, Black cancer patients are far more likely to be diagnosed at later stages, causing a notable disparity in survival rates between non-Hispanics whites (90%) and non-Hispanic blacks (66%).

As a computer scientist, Smith suspected this racial bias and reached out to Adamson, hoping a Black dermatologist would have more diverse data sets. Though Adamson didn’t have what Smith was initially looking for, this realization ignited a personal mission to investigate and reduce disparities.

Now, Adamson uses the knowledge gained through his years of research to help advance the fight for health equity. To him, that means not only gaining a wider array of data sets, but also having more conversations with patients to understand how socioeconomic status impacts the level and efficiency of care.

“At the end of the day, what matters most is how we help patients at the patient level,” Adamson told Upworthy. “And how can you do that without knowing exactly what barriers they face?”

american cancer society, skin cacner treatment"What matters most is how we help patients at the patient level."https://www.kellydavidsonstudio.com/

The American Cancer Society believes everyone deserves a fair and just opportunity to prevent, find, treat, and survive cancer—regardless of how much money they make, the color of their skin, their sexual orientation, gender identity, their disability status, or where they live. Inclusive tools and resources on the Health Equity section of their website can be found here. For more information about skin cancer, visit cancer.org/skincancer.

The mesmerizing lost art of darning knit fabric.

For most of human history, people had to make their own clothing by hand, and sewing skills were subsequently passed down from generation to generation. Because clothing was so time-consuming and labor-intensive to make, people also had to know how to repair clothing items that got torn or damaged in some way.

The invention of sewing and knitting machines changed the way we acquire clothing, and the skills people used to possess have largely gone by the wayside. If we get a hole in a sock nowadays, we toss it and replace it. Most of us have no idea how to darn a sock or fix a hole in any knit fabric. It's far easier for us to replace than to repair.

But there are still some among us who do have the skills to repair clothing in a way that makes it look like the rip, tear or hole never happened, and to watch them do it is mesmerizing.

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Pop Culture

Artist uses AI to create ultra realistic portraits of celebrities who left us too soon

What would certain icons look like if nothing had happened to them?

Mercury would be 76 today.

Some icons have truly left this world too early. It’s a tragedy when anyone doesn’t make it to see old age, but when it happens to a well-known public figure, it’s like a bit of their art and legacy dies with them. What might Freddie Mercury have created if he were granted the gift of long life? Bruce Lee? Princess Diana?

Their futures might be mere musings of our imagination, but thanks to a lot of creativity (and a little tech) we can now get a glimpse into what these celebrities might have looked like when they were older.

Alper Yesiltas, an Istanbul-based lawyer and photographer, created a photography series titled “As If Nothing Happened,” which features eerily realistic portraits of long gone celebrities in their golden years. To make the images as real looking as possible, Yesiltas incorporated various photo editing programs such as Adobe Lightroom and VSCO, as well as the AI photo-enhancing software Remini.

“The hardest part of the creative process for me is making the image feel ‘real’ to me,” Yesiltas wrote about his passion project. “The moment I like the most is when I think the image in front of me looks as if it was taken by a photographer.”

Yesiltas’ meticulousness paid off, because the results are uncanny.

Along with each photo, Yesiltas writes a bittersweet message “wishing” how things might have gone differently … as if nothing happened.
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